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Dr. Michael Berenbaum to close “Holocaust Remembered: Witness and Legacy” series at the Cultural Center on Sunday, Oct. 6


The West Virginia Division of Culture and History will join with the Federated Jewish Charities of Charleston and Kanawha County Schools to sponsor the final segment of the “Holocaust Remembered” lecture series, featuring Dr. Michael Berenbaum on Sunday, Oct. 6, at 7:30 p.m. at the Cultural Center, State Capitol Complex in Charleston. The evening program is free and open to the public and marks the conclusion of a month-long series of displays and programs throughout the Charleston area.

Berenbaum, director of the Sigi Ziering Institute for the Study of the Holocaust and Ethics and adjunct professor of theology at the University of Judaism in Los Angeles, will close the series with a lecture titled “Ordinariness of the Extraordinary: Values that Underscore the Rescuers.” The talk will focus on some of the people who risked their lives to rescue Jews and others from the Nazis during the Holocaust.

The author of 12 books, Berenbaum served as project director of the United State Holocaust Memorial Museum from 1988-93, overseeing its creation, and was deputy director of the President’s Commission on the Holocaust. In addition, he has done a considerable amount of work in film, including serving as coproducer for One Survivor Remembers: The Gerda Weissman Klein Story, which was recognized with an Academy Award, an Emmy Award and a Cable Ace Award.

Following Berenbaum’s presentation, two members of the West Virginia Youth Symphony, Amanda Melick on cello and Allyson Dent on violin, will perform in the Great Hall during a reception.

The Sunday evening program also marks the final day to view the exhibit “Holocaust Remembered: Witness and Legacy” at the Cultural Center, which has been part of the month-long series. The exhibit has several components, including “Schindler,” on loan from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, and “Poland 1942/Germany 1942,” which allows visitors to trace the steps of those condemned to concentration camps and those who grew up indoctrinated by the hatred of the Nazi government.

The Lobby gallery features “Reflections: Interpretations of the Holocaust,” artwork and poetry created by local students and teachers after they studied the Holocaust. The Balcony gallery exhibit, entitled “‘How could it happen?’: Through the Eyes of a West Virginian,” is a display of photographs by U.S. Army investigator James H. Hall, a native of Roane County who was one of the first Americans to see and photograph concentration camps and Holocaust survivors.

The month-long series is sponsored by the Federated Jewish Charities of Charleston, Kanawha County Schools and the West Virginia Division of Culture and History. For more information about the program, call (304) 558-0162 or visit the Division’s website at

The West Virginia Division of Culture and History, an agency of the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts, brings together the state’s past, present and future through programs and services in the areas of archives and history, the arts, historic preservation and museums. The Cultural Center is West Virginia’s official showcase for the arts. Visit the Division’s website at for more information about programs of the Division. The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.

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